42 Civilians, Including 19 Children, Killed In US-Led Attacks In Raqqa

न्यूज़ वर्ल्ड इंडिया | 0
| August 22 , 2017 , 15:12 IST

The quest to retake the ISIS-controlled Syrian city of Raqqa has taken a heavy toll on the local civilians. At least 42 civilians, including 19 children and 12 women have been killed in recent US-led coalition air strikes in the densely populated neighbourhoods of Raqqa, a monitoring group has said.

The activist-run group 'Raqqa Is Being Slaughtered Silently' reported that 32 of the deaths in the air strikes occurred in one neighbourhood alone, while the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights confirmed that the dead included 19 children and 12 women. Meanwhile, the Syrian state media simply reported that the air strikes killed dozens.

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All the media reports have blamed the US-led coalition in Syria for the attacks.

While the ISIS is losing ground in Iraq, the militant group is also facing heavy losses in Syria where the Kurdish and Arab militias backed by the US-led coalition have captured large areas of ISIS territory in the north and are mounting an assault on its former 'capital' Raqqa.

The US special envoy to the coalition against ISIS Brett McGurk, said that around 2,000 ISIS fighters remain in Raqqa and as much as 60 per cent of the city had been retaken. However, 25,000 civilians are still trapped in the city and are at the risk of being used as defences by ISIS in the face of an attack.

According to US officials, ISIS had 40,000 foreign fighters from 110 countries across Syria and Iraq in 2014 but since then they have lost 78 percent of their territory in Iraq and 58 percent of their territory in Syria.